INDIGENOUS SPORTS TO GET MORE ATTENTION FROM PSC
By Joash David Ricanor
MANILA– Indigenous sports will get more focus from the Philippine Sport Commission this year as the agency’s chief William Ramirez announced during the PSC’s Directional Meeting which started yesterday that the board shall continue the conduct of the Indigenous Games in more areas around the country.
Commissioner Charles Raymond Maxey, oversight commissioner for the Indigenous Games proposed the institutionalization of the project by making it a regular item in the annual plams and programs of the agency. This was outrightly approved by the members of the board who were all present in the said meeting.
“The law mandates us to nurture our culture. This is a perfect way to merge sports and culture” explained Ramirez. He cited the late Mona Sulaiman, a Cotabato native who made her mark in athletics during the 60’s, Bana Sailani – a Badjao who won bronze in three Asian Games, Igorot Jason Balabal who is a Southeast Asian Games gold medalist among those athlete achievers who hailed from different indigenous groups.
The first events of the Indigenous Games’ 2018 edition will be held in Mindanao for the first quarter of the year. Events in Visayas and Luzon will follow in the next quarters.
Maxey explained that the IG is aimed to promote the rich cultural heritage of our indigenous people as well as preserve their traditional sports and games.
The games was held last year in Ifugao as part of the gender equality program of the PSC under the Office of Commissioner Celia Kiram.